Looking Inside A Computer Laboratary Literature Search Computer Science Essay

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A Computer can be called a major aspect of a persons life. Either at home, either at the office, either for gaming, watching movies, checking mails and so on. But probably a few of us ask themselves what its inside a computer and how it works. To know it better we should know whats inside a computer and what makes it start working. The inside of the computer case contains everything that makes a PC run. Inside is the memory, storage, processor and everything else that supports the operation of the computer.

Once we have opened the case, lay it on its side so we can look at the inside components.


A processor is the logic circuitry that responds to and processes the basic instructions that drive a computer.

The term processor has generally replaced the term central processing unit (CPU). It carries out each instruction of the program in sequence, to perform the basic logical, arithmetical and input/output operations of the system.

1.Power & RS-232 port

2.Phillips high-sped Controller Area Network (CAN) transceivers

3.Maxim RS-232 controller

4.Mini USB ports

5.Freescale i.MX31 CPU (ARM1136JF-S RISC @ 400MHz, 128KB L2 cache, Vector Floating Point coprocessor, 473-pin BGA packaging)

6.Cirrus Logic Digital-to-Analog / Analog-to-Digital converter

7.Freescale internal voltage regulator, clock generator, and bus controller

8.Micron DDR2 SDRAM (64MB)

9.Texas Instruments low-dropout voltage regulator

10. Silicon Bluetooth Radio, Baseband IC, and ROM

11. NAND Flash (256MB) which holds Windows CE: Automobile 5 OS



Primary memory, often called main memory, constitutes that device, or group of devices, that holds instructions and data for rapid and direct access by the computer's central processing unit (CPU). Primary memory is synonymous with random-access memory (RAM). As a computer performs its calculations, it is continuously reading and writing information to and from RAM. For instance, instructions and data are retrieved from RAM for processing by the CPU, and the results are returned to RAM. Modern RAM is made of semiconductor circuitry, which replaced the magnetic core memory widely used in computers. RAM is a volatile form of information storage, meaning that when electrical power is terminated any data that it contains is lost. There are other semiconductor memory devices accessed by the CPU that are generally considered as being distinct from primary memory (. These memory units include cache memory, read-only memory (ROM), and Programmable Read Only Memory (PROM).

Secondary memory, also called auxiliary memory or mass storage, consists of devices not directly accessible by the CPU. Hard drives, floppy disks, tapes, and optical disks are widely used for secondary storage. The input and output of these devices is much slower than for the semiconductor devices that provide the computer's primary memory. Although access times are slow as compared to that of primary memory, secondary memory devices have important features that are unmatched by primary memory. First, most secondary storage devices are capable of containing much more information than is feasible for primary memory. A second, and essential, feature of secondary memory is that it is non-volatile. This means that data is stored with or without electrical power being supplied to the device, as opposed to RAM, which can retain its data only so long as electrical power is present.

Like primary memory, many secondary memory devices are capable of storing information, as well as retrieving it. Magnetic technology devices (such as hard drives, floppy disks, and tape) have this read-write capability. However, some mass storage devices can only read data, as in the case of CD-ROM drives. CD-ROMs utilize optical technology; however, newer optical technologies, such as compact disk-rewriteable, can both read and write information like magnetic storage devices.


An input device is any peripheral (piece of computer hardware equipment) used to provide data and control signals to an information processing system (such as a computer).Examples are keyboard, scanner,mouse.

KEYBOARD:- A keyboard is a typewriter keyboard, which uses a type of arrangement of buttons or keys, to act as mechanical levers or electronic switches. Despite the development of alternative input devices, such as the mouse, touch screens, pen devices, character recognition, voice recognition, and improvements in computer speed and memory size, the keyboard remains the most commonly used and most versatile device used for direct input into computers.

SCANNER:- Computer peripheral or a stand-alone device that converts a document, film, graphic, or photograph to a digital image, manipulable through an appropriate software. When used with an optical character recognition software, a scanner can convert printed, typewritten text into a digital file that can be read by a word processor.

MOUSE:- It is a hand-operated electronic device that controls the coordinates of a cursor on the computer screen as we move it around on a pad; on the bottom of the device is a ball that rolls on the surface of the pad.

An output device is any piece of computer hardware equipment used to communicate the results of data processing carried out by an information processing system (such as a computer) to the outside world.

eg moniter,speakers etc.

MONITOR:- The monitor's role is to display the computer's user interface and open programs, allowing the user to interact with the computer, typically using the keyboard and the mouse.

SPEAKERS:-They act as devices containing a transducer that converts electrical signals into sound waves for the production of sound.

PRINTERS:- Electronic device that accepts text files or images from a computer and transfers them to a medium such as paper or film. It can be connected directlyor indirectly connected to a computer via a network. Printers are classified as impact printers and non-impact printers.


There are many support elements such as motherboard, case, power supply, heatsinks and fans.

MOTHERBOARD:-The motherboard is the called the main circuit board inside the PC. Every components at some point communicates through the motherboard, either by directly or by communicating through one of the motherboards ports. The motherboard is one big communication highway in the CPU. Its purpose is to provide a platform for all the other components and peripherals to talk to each other.

CASE:-A computer case is the enclosure that contains most of the components of a computer. A computer case is sometimes incorrectly referred to metonymously as a CPU or hard drive referring to comp onents housed within the case.

POWERSUPPLY:- A power supply unit (PSU) is the main component that supplies power to the other components in a computer. Basically, a power supply unit is typically designed to convert general-purpose alternating current (AC) electric power to usable low-voltage direct current (DC) power for the internal components of the computer. Some power supplies have a switch to change between 230 V and 115 V. Other models have automatic sensors that switch input voltage automatically, or are able to accept any voltage between those limits.

HEATSINKS AND FANS:-An electronic device that incorporates either a fan or a peltier device which allows any hot device such as a processor to keep cool. It helps in maintaining the temperature inside a computer.


In a nutshell, As any other machine which has to work with data's a computer has a motherboard, this is a primal board which has all the crucial components to provide the information further. Another main component is the CPU (central processing unit). This CPU coordinates the activity of the entire system. These two components are the most important hardware devices of a PC. Of course there are and other system devices like a Random Access Memory (RAM), a Hard Disk, a compact disk read-only memory (CD-ROM), a floppy disk, a graphic card, a sound card, a network adapter and the periphery devices like keyboard, mouse, printer and others.

When we turn the power on, the system starts to boot. The first things that you see, are the basic input output systems (BIOS), which starts to communicate with CPU by making a quick test of all the hardware components and then send the information to further. After this, the CPU takes the control, having two tasks: manage the flow of data and assure the right deployment of the mathematical and logical operations. Inside the CPU the amount of interactions between flown or released electrons, tiny electronic components allows to be processed billions of basic unit information every second.